Arequipa's Cathedral in the Plaza de Armas

Come with us on our luxury tour of Arequipa and Colca Canyon, the world’s second deepest canyon.

The White City is waiting.

From its colonial-era capital to the second deepest canyon in the world, Peru’s southern region of Arequipa is the ideal location from which to understand the country’s ancestral traditions, experience authentic cuisine and witness the raw beauty of the Andean valley. With Black Tomato, you’ll have our knowledgeable guides to help you gain a deeper understanding of Arequipa’s captivating culture and show you parts of Peru few have seen.

Stepped terraces in Colca Canyon in Peru

What Is the Colca Canyon?

There’s good reason why the Colca Canyon is one of the most visited locations in Peru. Twice as deep as the Grand Canyon, this natural Peruvian wonder is home to one of the world’s deepest gorges, as well as the Andean Condor’s home.

One of our expert guides, Piero, will take you to Cruz del Condor – the best spot for admiring these majestic creatures – where you’ll gain a new insight as to why they’re considered Peru’s most important bird. Admire the vast openness of this amazing space and expect to feel the breeze as they swoop overhead.

With a depth of 3,270 metres, this jaw-dropping canyon attracts a myriad of visitors annually, as its history, pre-Inca culture, ruins and old-age traditions regularly attract the attention of eager travellers searching for a magical experience. Something authentic, untapped and real.

Regardless of when you choose to visit, this Peruvian paradise will exhibit views that you’ll truly remember. From January to March, expect to see lush, emerald green terrains whilst May to November will feature the Valley’s dry season. Both are equally spectacular, and we can arrange your itinerary around either season.

Read more: Head out on our guided tour through the endless, pre-Inca terraces and ruins, notably the Uyo Uyo settlement.

Andean Condor soaring over Colca Canyon

What can I do in the Colca Valley?

From indulging in the scenic vistas, enjoying unrivalled views of the magnificent Andean Condor, as well as discovering the rest of the Valley’s diverse wildlife – expect to see llamas, alpacas and vicuñas – hiking, horse-riding or cycling up and down this ancient agricultural landscape, through Cabanaconde and by Sabancayo and Ampato, the largest volcanoes in the valley. Trust us when we say that your experience here will be nothing short of extraordinary.

With one of the world’s greatest treasures located nearby, we can arrange for you to stay on the mountain summit right next door to Machu Picchu at the highly exclusive Belmond Sanctuary Lodge. From here, take a scenic train journey from Cusco to Aguas Calientes, also known as Machu Picchu Pueblo or meet one of our local anthropologists, Dr Jean-Jacques Decoster, for a guided tour of the ruins.

Read more: Just say the word and we’ll take you to see Lake Titicaca, the planet’s highest navigable lake.

The Colca Canyon landscape

Where should I stay in the Colca Valley?

On the outskirts of quaint Yanque village, you’ll find the exquisite Colca Lodge Spa & Hot Springs. Nestled alongside a riverbank in the mountains, this picturesque location will allow you to find true tranquillity. This romantically remote and eco-friendly lodge in the Andes features 45 rooms, all of which offer a quintessentially rustic feel. Staying at this ideal mountain retreat means that you’ll discover an array of exciting open-air activities and indulge in an exceptional level of comfort.

Your room will radiate a warm and welcoming feel, as you step into a space beautifully decorated with typical Peruvian colours. With a private adjoining terrace, you’ll be able to start the day by gazing at the perfect vistas of the Colca Valley, leaving you with the perfect sense of serenity that will prepare you for the day’s exploration.

In the morning, you’ll be met at your hotel by one of our private guides to make the journey to the awe-inspiring Colca Canyon. During your tour, you’ll pass the Pampa Cañahuas National Reserve and several picturesque villages such as Pulpera, Callali, Sibayo and Tuti. Throughout this truly cultural experience, you’ll wander by vast inactive volcanoes and various other geologically fascinating formations which are typically characteristic of this area.

Once you’re back at your hotel, spend your evening stargazing at the lodge’s eco-spa as you indulge in the soothing thermal baths, which are sourced from the region’s natural hot springs. If you’d prefer a more adventurous experience, then we can arrange for you to saddle up and go horse-ride along the highland plateau with one of our expert guides to witness this impressive natural wonder.

Stay here: During your stay at Colca Lodge, take a one-of-a-kind tasting experience at the Las Pocitas barbecue bar.

A gorge twice as deep as the Grand Canyon, mouth-watering cuisine, pre-Inca culture and much more awaits in this southern region of Peru. Keep scrolling to reveal more Arequipa tours or explore more of our Peruvian adventures.


Explore ‘The White City’ of Arequipa

The spectacular journey from Colca Canyon to Arequipa – Peru’s second-largest city – is truly worth grabbing the window seat for. At nearly 2400m altitude, vistas surrounding ‘The White City’ – a name which has mysterious indigenous origins but has been because of the pearly volcanic rock used to construct many of its historic houses – are truly jaw-dropping. Wonderfully bordered by three dramatic volcanoes, notably the ethereal ‘El Misti, the city is overflowing with spectacular baroque architecture and a culture worth exploring.

Also known as the City of Eternal Spring – this name stems from the fact that the city enjoys incredible weather all-year-round – Arequipa is one of Peru’s cultural hotspots, as it’s home to deliciously authentic culinary delights. Take your time wandering along the city’s cobblestone streets to its fresh food markets, fine restaurants and bright zesty juice bars to fully appreciate the country’s exquisitely diverse cuisine. Try Peru’s beloved ceviche and a signature Pisco sour. You won’t be disappointed.

Either browse through the city’s broad collection of historical finds – pre-Incan remains, antique paintings and Juanita, the frozen Inca girl – bask in the beautiful beaches, enjoy an array of intrepid climbing and mountain biking activities or make the most of the striking scenery that surrounds the city. Take full advantage of our trekking opportunities alongside our expert guides to learn more about the area; you’ll definitely stumble upon several gems typically hidden to the untrained eye.

Read more: After exploring ‘The White City’, we’ll take you to see the vibrant textile markets in Puno.

Monastery Santa Catalina in Arequipa

The perfect place to stay in Arequipa

After a day exploring, rest up in one of the 40 rooms in the superb mansion-turned-hotel Casa Andina. Classic and authentic, Casa Andina was built in 1794 and is based in the heart of ‘The White City’, thereby offering the perfect hub to explore the city’s highlights; situated right next to Arequipa’s iconic Catalina monastery the spectacular Plaza de Armas, you’ll be in the ideal location.

Charming and highly comfortable, your room will be the perfect place to return to after a long day exploring Arequipa, so take advantage of all the up-to-date features and relax by looking over the picturesque views that the capital has to offer.

Stay here: Whilst you stay at Casa Andina, we’ll arrange an evening at the exquisite Alma Restaurante.

El Misti and 'The White City' at sunset

A tip from our Travel Expert

Our in-house Latin America Travel Expert, Tom, recommends that you ‘make a stop at Cruz del Condor – 3,938 feet above the river – where you can marvel at the depth of the Colca Canyon and also get an idea of the impressive flight of the Andean condor’.


With us, your travels in Arequipa will be eye-opening, as you will be guided expertly by our hugely knowledgeable local guides so that you can gain a new perspective few will have. If this heightens your curiosity, then why not take a glance at our Peruvian itineraries to learn more about the experiences that we offer.